Tuesday, July 02, 2013

On shearing the piglet

I know it speaks very badly of me, but I delight in the travails of those self-important "leakers," Julian Assange and Edward Snowden--Mr Snowden especially. When he was in Hong Kong, he explained in all solemnity that he didn't want to go to jail because he wouldn't have internet access there. (Really? They don't have wi-fi in Cellblock Seven?) Then he flies to Moscow, evidently on Mr Assange's dime, only to find that he can't leave the transit lounge. It seems that the United States has revoked his passport and he doesn't have a Russian visa. (Really? If you betray your country, it might take your passport away?)

"I myself would prefer not to deal with these issues," said Russia's elected dictator, Vladimir Putin. "It's like shearing a piglet: there's a lot of squealing, but there's little wool." That was while he enjoyed rubbing President Obama's nose in the mud, only to have second thoughts. The United States is, after all, "our American partners.? (Really? You mean that Russia might put realpolitik ahead of political asylum  for a leaker?)

Now Venezuela steps up to the plate with the hint of asylum there in the nation whose economy was destroyed by Hugo Chavez. Nobody knows where all the money went, that Chavez burned through, but perhaps it went to equip its prisons with wi-fi.

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